OCAD U Exhibition Opens at Mercedes-Benz Financial Services

Corridor of office, with art works on walls
Monday, November 6, 2017

The ninth annual Experiencing Perspectives art exhibit opened on October 17 at Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, featuring works by students, alumni and professors from the Drawing & Painting Program of OCAD University. The exhibit, featuring more than 70 works by 43artists, opened with a reception at the company’s Mississauga offices. Guests at the reception enjoyed an opportunity to meet with the artists. Special guests included Thomas Beck and Yvonne Denz from the Canadian German Chamber of Industry and Commerce and Judy Leroux, long-standing community partner from Youth without Shelter.

Stefan Karrenbauer, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services Canada, hosted the reception, with Katie Cauzillo, Art Program Specialist and curator of the exhibition, as well as Leila Matta, Art Program Manager who oversees the company’s art exhibitions in Canada and the United States. Guests from OCAD U included Laura Millard, Interim Chair, Drawing and Painting, Anda Kubis, Associate Professor, Faculty of Art and Gillian Flanagan, Senior Development Officer.

This year, the company purchased its fifth art piece for its permanent collection—artist Amanda Clyne’s painting, With Restraint. Clyne participated in the very first exhibition held at their offices in 2009.

At Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, immense value is placed on the influence that art has in the workplace. Thanks to a special partnership with OCAD University, Mercedes-Benz Financial Services enhances its work environment with cutting-edge art from their students, graduates and faculty.

The exhibition can be viewed online at http://mbfs-art.com/








Group of four people talking
Artist Arruniva Mohendran standing next to her art hung on a red wall
Artist Daniel Wu standing next to his abstract painting with pinks and yellows
Painting of a man who looks like Napoleon and a girl dressed as a fair on a camel

Meet Anishinaabe artist Katheryn Wabegijig

My name is Katheryn Wabegijig. I am a 37 year old Ojibway/Odawa multi-disciplinary artist, custom picture framer and emerging writer who grew up in the small mining town of Elliot Lake, Ontario with ancestry in Wikwemikong, Atikameksheng Anishnawbek and belonging to Garden River First Nation/Ketegaunseebee. I graduated from Cambrian College’s 4 year Fine Arts program in 2003 and in 2016 with a BFA from OCAD University majoring in Drawing and Painting and minoring in Indigenous Visual Culture where I furthered my cultural education and continued on my path towards Decolonization through cathartic personal explorations.

It is not difficult to see why OCAD University is the leading academic institution of choice for Indigenous students pursuing Art and Design post-secondary education and I would like to share with you some of my experiences here at OCAD and in the INVC program. I believe that Indigenous students in communities across Turtle Island have a great opportunity to excel as artists and designers through the various programs that are offered here and the amount of support offered to students. I also believe that it is vital to go directly to those communities, engage those wishing to further their arts education and inspire their choice to be OCAD University.

I, myself, entered OCAD University as a second year transfer student and mature student after 10 years of focusing on my custom picture framing career. I graduated from Cambrian College where I took their 4 year Fine Arts program in 2003 but always had the dream of attending OCAD. I had to make a choice between my career and furthering my education and so, I told myself, “If I get accepted into OCAD University this time, I’m going!” The professors, staff and fellow artists here made my experience at OCAD University the very best decision of my life and I wish I had had the courage to take the step earlier. It was the best decision that I have ever made for myself as an artist and as an individual. I took Drawing and Painting as my major. I felt that I absolutely needed to take the Indigenous Visual Culture program because it was vital to my learning as an Anishinaabe artist who is continually searching for my place in each of the communities that I have grown up within.

Not only did I achieve my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with an INVC minor but I had the opportunity to witness and learn from amazing Indigenous artists and staff at INVC who profoundly changed and supported my art practice. OCAD U and INVC made it possible for me to delve into my art by working through personal and cultural issues in a safe and supportive environment. In fact, my artwork that was featured in the culminating Grad Ex show for the graduating class was purchased by the Royal Ontario Museum! So, the opportunities here at OCAD University are truly countless, with exhibition opportunities that are attended by some of the most influential people in the art industry.

Also, students will find that throughout their time here that they will continually be surrounded by those influential presences. To be able to hear Janet Rogers recite and perform her powerful pieces of writing, to share in the knowledge of respected Elders and artists like Duke Redbird, to go on a tour of the ROM led by Bonnie Devine (the founding Chair of INVC) speaking on her masterpieces or to be lucky enough to be taught by her or Ryan Rice, an amazing Curator and the Chair of INVC, is undoubtedly an honour and only to be experienced here at Canada’s oldest and largest art, design and new media university.

The INVC Student Centre creates many community building events and activities including Buffalo Stew lunches held every Wednesday, Bead and Read which brings together readings from amazing authors while learning new beading techniques. The Mighty Pen, a writing group held for Indigenous students and students of colour began in my final year at OCAD U. I had the privilege of being involved with the very first group. What stemmed from that was a reconnection to my love for writing that led to my first published piece this year. My mentor from that group was and still is an amazing support. These groups, staff and spaces offer a welcoming gathering place to share experience, grow as artists and make friends that will last well beyond your OCAD University experience! Organized trips that I was able to attend were The McMichael Gallery and the Petroglyphs in Peterborough, which had an incredible impact on my art practice. That list is ever expanding, connecting students in this amazing program to culturally significant and life-altering experiences in Toronto and surrounding areas.

The way that I was able to delve into my art by working through personal and cultural issues in a safe and supportive environment allowed me to come to many realizations and revelations that carry with me in my professional career as an artist and as Collections Manager at Canadian Arctic Producers.


Standard Template

Figure 1 Exhibition

Abstract figure painting using multiple shades of pink called "Soft Pink Forms" by Clara Lynas.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 4:15pm to Thursday, June 29, 2017 - 6:15pm

Figure 1 showcases the work of 12 upper-year OCAD University students.  With the only constraint being that the work must engage with the tradition of figurative representation in some way, these artists worked across medium and style to interpret the human form and its significance in a variety of ways. Approaches range from realistic life painting to the exploration of abstract forms.  Some artists chose to focus on expression, gesture, or emotion, while others tackled our relationships to objects, each other and the spaces we occupy. 

Figure 1 is curated by Francis Tomkins and includes works by Misbah Ahmed, Alexandria Boyce, Wil Brask, Will Carpenter, Jisu Lee, Wenting Li, Clara Lynas, Natalie Mark, James Okore, Rem Ross, Brianna Tosswill, and Dalbert Vilarino.

The Learning Zone is located in the Grange, is wheelchair accessible and has two accessible gender-neutral bathrooms.  It has a scent-free policy that is not well observed.

Image credit: "Soft Pink Forms" by Clara Lynas

Venue & Address: 
Learning Zone, 113 McCaul Street Level 1. Also accessible from 122 St. Patrick Street.

Christina Sealey

Christina Sealey is a visual artist and musician. She has exhibited throughout Canada and the UK in both public and commercial galleries and in artist-run centres and regularly performs throughout Europe, North America and in Japan. Her work can be found in private, corporate and public collections.

Drawing & Painting Advanced Studio is having an Open Studio!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016 - 9:00pm to 11:00pm

Drawing & Painting Advanced Studio is having an Open Studio at 205 Richmond St. on Tuesday, December 6th from 4 to 6 pm.



Venue & Address: 
OCAD University 205 Richmond St. West Lower Level
Drawing & Painting Advanced Studio Open Studio poster.  Photo of paint cans with test ovelay

Critique Night with Colette Laliberté, Faculty of Art

photo of Colette Laliberté and two participants in conversation
Friday, November 18, 2016

Critique Night with Colette Laliberté  November 17 at 7pm

The Latchman gallery will hold a critique night with Colette Laliberté for artists in the area.

Colette Laliberté will lead a lively and encouraging critique session. Bring a work of art for her and the group to discuss or just come and listen and learn. Register in advance for critique spots as there only 12 available.

Colette Laliberté is a practicing visual artist and professor of drawing and painting at ODADU


Venue & Address: 
Latchman Gallery, 6240 Main Street, Stouffville, Ontario
Everyone is welcome. $10 suggested donation.

Auguries and Dreams, paintings and drawings by Christina Sealey

Suspension, 2016. Oil on Canvas, 30 x 24 inches
Wednesday, November 2, 2016 - 10:30pm to Sunday, November 27, 2016 - 1:30am

The Red Head Gallery will present the exhibition Auguries and Dreams by artist and OCAD U Illustration, Assistant Professor Christina Sealey.


From The Red Head Gallery:

Christina Sealey’s practice is based primarily in drawing, painting, and sound. Through her work she has been examining the relationship between identity and environment: the intimate connections between people and the places they inhabit. Auguries and dreams is a collection of new paintings that explore the intangible and mysterious qualities of "night" or "darkness”, a dominant theme in Christina's recent work. These paintings play with the symbolism associated with “night” – in particular the association with the unconscious, transformation, and absence / presence. She is particularly interested in how these ideas influence and intersect with the physical experience of night and darkness. Moments of tension, indecision, transition, and mystery are recurring themes. The play between representation and abstraction emphasizes the themes of mystery and ambiguity, blurring the distinction between the real and the imaginary.  

Christina Sealey is an artist and musician based in Hamilton, Ontario. She holds an MFA in Drawing and Painting from the Edinburgh College of Art. Christina has exhibited throughout Canada and the UK in public and commercial galleries, and she has performed her music in many countries around the world. Her work is represented in private, corporate, and public collections. She has been awarded grants for her painting and audio work from both the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts and from private foundations including the Pollock-Krasner Foundation and Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation. Christina is an assistant professor at OCAD University.


Venue & Address: 
The Red Head Gallery 401 Richmond Street, Toronto, ON
Suspension, 2016. Oil on Canvas, 30 x 24 inches

Students share their experience of the Awenda Inspired! field trip

Thursday, October 27, 2016 - 4:15pm

Angela Lea Tupper, Fourth Year, Drawing and Painting

The Awenda Inspired! field trip was my first time painting en plein air, and not having to worry about the travel arrangements made the experience less intimidating. Being joined by a large group of fellow artists was also a wonderful support, allowing me to devote my full attention to our surroundings—I could observe simply as a visitor settling into the serene rhythm of the park, and also as an artist recording the effects of light and colour on my canvas. The opportunity to display our work further offered an interactive activity to conclude the day. Both artists and visitors were able to compare our varied responses to the landscape that inspired the Group of Seven painters. It provided us with a creative way to share our perceptions of the park as a community. Hopefully the species newly discovered in the territory that day (a variety of inner-city rat) was not one of the elements we shared with the park!


Connie Santos, Fourth Year, Drawing and Painting

The Awenda-inspired trip was an amazing opportunity to get away from the busy urban life of Toronto and to be surrounded by nature. It was my first time going to Awenda and I found the beaches to be very breath taking and very inspirational for en plein air painting. The beaches provide a clear view of Georgian Bay and its many islands, as well as a clear view of the rocks underneath the water.  The staff was friendly and more than willing to provide individuals with more knowledge such as the wild life found in the park. This trip is a great opportunity for artists to include on their CVs. Awenda is a beautiful and tranquil place that will leave you wanting to go back. 

Awenda Inspired Exhibition poster with event info and photo of forest